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Content on this website will be posted primarily in English. Content in French or Aboriginal languages will be posted when available. We apologize for this inconvenience.

Browse or search through the Active Circle database to find resources about Aboriginal youth sports and recreation.

The Active Circle resource database contains information gathered from organizations across Canada who research and engage in Aboriginal sports, activities for youth and healthy living.

This paper provides a framework for evaluating youth-led social change. The framework considers: seven topics (e.g., environment, human health and safety, and education); nine engagement types (e.g., volunteerism, research and innovation, and political engagement); six organizational types (e.g., advisory body, social enterprise, and individual); three strategies (socialization, influence, and power); and three scales of impacts (individual, community/inter-organizational, and national/international). Using this framework, empirical research provides evidence of how youth – defined as young people 15–24 years of age – have been agents of change in Canada over the 35 years from 1978 to 2012. A media content analysis of 264 articles, combined with frequency and chi-square tests, were completed to study the factors and the relationships among them. The results show a strong relationship between the impact and the strategy, topic, engagement type, and organizational type. The results also show a strong relationship between the strategy and the impact, engagement type and organizational type. The findings have implications for youth leaders and those who advocate for, work with, support, and educate them, and for those interested in evaluating social change efforts.

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The Municipal Youth Engagement Handbook is designed to highlight the resources, strategies, and tools that elected municipal officials and public administrators alike can employ to address the challenges of engaging and recruiting young Canadians as future municipal leaders and workers.

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Key Message: Designing communities that support physical activity is likely to produce a wide variety of additional benefits, ranging from mental health to environmental sustainability and economics.

Source: Sallis, et al. (2015). Co-benefits of designing communities for active living: an exploration of literature. International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity. 12:30 doi:10.1186/s12966-015-0188-2

Purpose: To reverse the global epidemic of physical inactivity that is responsible for more than 5 million deaths per year, many groups recommend creating “activity-friendly environments.” Such environments may have other benefits, beyond facilitating physical activity, but these potential co-benefits have not been well described. The purpose of the present paper is to explore a wide range of literature and conduct an initial summary of evidence on co-benefits of activity-friendly environments.

Evidence: Five physical activity settings were defined: parks/open space/trails, urban design, transportation, schools, and workplaces/buildings. Several evidence-based activity-friendly features were identified for each setting. Six potential outcomes/co-benefits were searched: physical health, mental health, social benefits, safety/injury prevention, environmental sustainability, and economics. A total of 418 higher-quality findings were summarized. The overall summary indicated 22 of 30 setting by outcome combinations showed “strong” evidence of co-benefits. Each setting had strong evidence of at least three co-benefits, with only one occurrence of a net negative effect. All settings showed the potential to contribute to environmental sustainability and economic benefits. Specific environmental features with the strongest evidence of multiple co-benefits were park proximity, mixed land use, trees/greenery, accessibility and street connectivity, building design, and workplace physical activity policies/programs. The exploration revealed substantial evidence that designing community environments that make physical activity attractive and convenient is likely to produce additional important benefits. The extent of the evidence justifies systematic reviews and additional research to fill gaps.

One notable finding was that economic benefits of activity-friendly designs were documented for all five physical activity settings. Based on the specific studies identified, many groups could enjoy economic benefits of activity-friendly environments, including governments (due to reduced spending on infrastructure), homeowners, real estate developers, health insurance companies, employers, retailers, commercial property owners, and taxpayers. This is an extremely broad range of beneficiaries, and some of them may not be aware of the economic benefits of activity-friendly environments.

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This Wellspring article looks at the WIXX multimedia communication campaign to support and maintain active living and healthy eating among Québec youth, which is based on the successful American VERB™ campaign. The campaign's objectives are to:

  • Increase knowledge, attitudes, and self-efficacy, as well as promoting favourable social norms toward physical activity
  • Increase support from parents and other persons of influence
  • Publicize opportunities for physical activity through mass media advertising and community-based activities
  • Increase physical activity among tweens

This article looks at how the campaign was developed, core components, examples, and lessons learned and conclusions.

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Moving Ahead: Healthy Active Living in Canada is a research project by The Conference Board of Canada's Canadian Alliance for Sustainable Health Care (CASHC). It will comprise several research briefings that aim to identify cost-effective, scalable, and sustainable interventions to promote and improve healthy active living. The goal of this work is to fill the gaps in knowledge and practice, and to engage the relevant stakeholders—including government, employers, and all Canadians—in working toward a culture of healthy active living.

Read more or download the report here

It is important to understand youth engagement as central to any best practice intervention.  Valuing youth engagement puts the focus on the positive contribution that youth make to programs and their effectiveness; this moves programs from being done “for” youth to “with” youth. There is a gap in the research in how to identify the source and implications of youth vulnerability for their engagement (Paterson & Panessa, 2008a; Poland, Tupker, & Breland, 2002). The purpose of this report is to explore how different youth engagement strategies are being used to help children and youth in the most challenging of contexts nurture resilience, prevent mental health problems and build a special place for themselves in the collective life of their communities.

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Canadian Sport for Life is proud to announce that the PLAY tools have been printed and are available for order. Created by Dr. Dean Kriellaars of the University of Manitoba and developed by Canadian Sport for Life, the (PLAY) tools are designed to assess a child’s level of physical literacy and improve the health of our nation. Directed at individuals aged seven and up, the PLAY tools provide a means to determine gaps in physical literacy development, and provide calls-to-action to help improve these areas.

The Canadian Association for the Advancement of Women and Sport and Physical Activity (CAAWS), along with its partners AthletesCAN and Coaches of Canada, launched Leading the Way: Working with LGBT Athletes and Coaches.

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